Some evenings after office I go alone to take strolls in the elite pavements of Abulane, Meerut. Like, I did in C.P when I was in Delhi a year ago.
A year ago, I was just the same, the throbbing pain that refuses to heal and leave, my head. It clutches me as tightly and fearfully as a new bride clings to her newly wedded husband, just at the moment she is leaving behind everything. But, what am I leaving behind?
Nothing and everything.
I sit and stare from the glass window of the café I am in. Moving cars, bikes and bodies, some dead and some moving. Caked faces with powders and lip stained with bright colours. Indeed, women are getting bold to wear such seductive colours in the broad daylight. I wonder how many men would be desirous of getting kissed by those lips.
I sipped my coffee.
My diary lays in front of me, the papers are calling out to me to write verses. Perhaps, I fail to convey that it’s an old friend and lover, who has taken over my mind like it did two years before. My words are failing me like they did before. I am forgetting verses and words are fading from my head. At times, it is difficult to remember a simple spelling. No matter how hard I try it won’t come to me, then infuriated, I’d open the dictionary and things would settle, momentarily. How can I forget the spellings like that? Years of education and personal readings have done nothing to me or its just I am failing at everything.
I took another sip from my coffee.
The nervous waiter appeared, he enquired whether I need something else? I stare into his eyes as if he is asking for my life. I wanted to reply but I could not find a pretext, I don’t know what I want. Am I not human anymore? Humans have unlimited wants, but what are my wants, I don’t know, it’s long back I stopped expecting things and when they pop out from life at times they make me anxious or at times they fail to baffle me. Because I know it’s a trap and I will not fall in the trap. I have to move and keep moving till the day I succeed. Succeed in something that I don’t know, but there must be something I must be good at.
The waiter was panicky, I think it is his first job that’s why his hands are shaking, the way I was shaking when I first delivered a speech in school on republic day. The way I was shaking when I was in college and was asked to give a class presentation, the last day waiting for metro when I left college and everything changed. Breaking from the train of my thoughts I questioned myself Do I look like Medusa with my dishevelled hair, after a busy office day? Of course not!
I broke into a smile with these thoughts and he smiled back.
I always hate to look at fancy menus. So, I asked him straight away do they serve Brownies? He approved with a nod and I was again lost in the outside world. When did he come and go, I do not remember minutes later I discovered a bowl of brownies with ice cream rolls. I despised that sight till now.
How long it has been since I had an ice cream last with a merry heart! No, I don’t have any haunting memories attached with ice creams, it’s just we don’t hang out anymore. Ice creams too dislike me like the rest of the world. In the heat of the evening ice cream melted away, untouched. As people like me die every day without poison. To fade out one doesn’t need a reason even I don’t have one for me. People say I overthink, but that’s how I understand them where their words fail and I interpret their silence.
Silence have more stories to tell that the words can convey. Just like my professor in creative writing class says, “at times fiction goes deeper than the truth.”
At Abulane there comes elite people and there are malnourished children just like you see at C.P or outside the metro stations. They are the children of God, hope and future of our nation. As soon as these elite ladies step out of their cars these children surround them and her pretty babies, begging for few coins, but the men shoo away the future of the nation and go inside the five-star hotel. At that point, my phone rang up and heads turned towards me. It always happened, Slash’s guitar can’t go unnoticed especially when its ‘sweet child o’mine.’
It’s Tasmia on the other side of the phone. Tasmia is my little sister, though elder to me in many aspects. It’s not that she is dominating, she understands things when I fail, moreover, she got a special talent of swiping my stuff at one go, from the little corner which I managed to get for myself after much struggle. She dislikes my ways as Maa does. The way my papers, books and dairy rules the little table in the large room. She swipes it off at one go, no matter if I had arranged it the way I wanted. But, I love her. During the days when I was I Delhi we had frequent conversations, where she just asked me to come back. Then, the warmth of her voice was the only essence of home.
I said hello! She asked me to come home soon as it’s getting dark. I nodded staring out, getting no reply from me infuriated her. Though, she just exclaimed get something good to eat! I said I will try to and hung up.
I stare back to the fading bowl. I wish the waiter had known me he would never have served me ice-cream. I asked for the bill, I paid for the bowl of ice cream as well. I said the coffee was good he smiled may be, he will sleep with a smile like that knowing he is doing well in his life. I think he is not married yet, though it’s his age. Well, he turns back and vanished into the kitchen.
I picked up my bag and left the café on my way back I get some delicacies packed for my sweet child at home.